Reducing the Gender Employment Gap in the Hungarian Labour Market
Release of final project report on 23 November 2022
The OECD Social Policy Team and the Structural Reform Support Programme (SRSP) of the European Commission's DG REFORM have cooperated in providing technical support to the Hungarian government to improve women’s access to the labour market and to reduce the gender employment gap. The project ran between August 2020 and September 2022.
Despite strong employment growth in recent years in Hungary, women’s patterns of paid work continue to look different to those of men. In spite of reforms to strengthen employment among mothers, such as allowing parents in receipt of parental leave benefits to work unlimited hours once the child turns twelve months old, the gender gap has not narrowed. 63% of women of working age (16-64) were in employment in 2019, 14 percentage points below the male employment-rate.
For Hungary, there is a clear economic case for closing the gender employment gap. The countries working-age population has been shrinking since the mid-2000’s; 5 percent among men and 9 percent among women, and United Nations’ projections suggest that the overall size of the working-age population could fall by almost a quarter by 2050. Strengthening mothers’ labour market engagement could help address the looming labour supply issues.
Against this background, the Hungarian Prime Minister’s Office, Strategic State Secretariat for Families has requested support from the European Commission’s DG REFORM and the OECD to provide technical assistance to improve women’s access to the labour market and to reduce the gender employment gap.
The project collected beliefs and views around mothers’ employment from key Hungarian stakeholders to inform the direction of future polices to improve the female labour market participation. As part of this, stakeholders were contacted to participate in a stakeholder questionnaire. The resulting proposals also draws on international expertise and best practices, collected from a range of international researchers and policy-makers.
As part of the project, the OECD gathered stakeholder’s views through an online questionnaire in-depth follow-up interviews and/or focus group meetings.
On the 9th of July 2021, the OECD hosted an international workshop to foster exchange of good practices between Hungary and other relevant countries in the field of teleworking arrangements and employer-provided childcare.
A final project-conference was held in June 2022. The OECD presented and discussed results, and collected stakeholders’ feedback, which helped fine-tune policy recommendations and develop action plans and indicators for monitoring purposes to be put together in a final report.
The project ended in September 2022 and its final report is about to be releaved in November 2022.
Key resources and outputs
Final report: Reducing the Gender Employment Gap in Hungary (forthcoming, late November 2022)
Project final conference (June 2022)
International practice report (November 2021)
Policy Workshop (July 2021)
Stakeholders’ consultation (April 2021)